I arranged with my hotel in Ljubljana to have a car pick me up and take me to the airport after breakfast and check-out for €9. I was picking up a rental car and driving out to Lake Bled for an overnight.
I arrived at the airport rental office at 9am, an hour ahead of my reservation time, and found it closed. I called and the office manager told me she was running some errands and would be in as soon as possible. Gotta love small countries!
It was a beautiful day to drive around the country and the highway was super easy with minimal traffic. I did accidently take the exit before I meant to, but was rewarded with the cute village and interesting church of Brezje, a pilgrimage site of Slovenians.
Restaurant Lectar I had a plate of the traditional Slovenian dumplings, Idrijski žlikrofi. These cute little pasta hats are made from dough stuffed with potato; mine then had a delicious meat sauce. Very filling and very good.
Hotel Triglav, which sits at the northwest side of the lake, very near the train station. The hotel originally opened in 1906 by the then mayor of Bled, and is currently owned by his grandson.
My room had a balcony with a picture-perfect view of the lake, famous island, and the surrounding mountains. It was so stunning I decided to get a bottle of wine from the restaurant, and spent the rest of my day reading and enjoying the views.
I had dinner that night at Restaurant 1906, the hotel's very nice eatery. My 3-course meal included potato soup with truffle oil, saddle of veal with struklji (another traditional Slovenian dumpling made from dough, stuffed with cheese and herbs, rolled up and baked), and chocolate mousse. Dinner started out rough when I requested a martini made with a local gin and it arrived very sweet. The evening righted itself as all the food was great, and the Slovenian Pinot Noir I had was excellent. And the dining room looks out directly to the lake for brilliant views all evening.
For €13 each, the captain rows his boat with about 8 passengers out to the island and gives you 30 minutes to explore. This is more than enough time to check out the church, ring the church bell (and make a wish), climb up the tower, and walk around the tiny island. Tickets into the church are not included in your boat price.
The hotel had recommended I stop at Sova for lunch during my hike, and it was fantastic! This truffle pasta and a glass of wine set me back €17!
I can't recommend Slovenia enough! Go now before it is on everyone's list!
Other posts from this trip:
Something About Slovenia
One Night at Hisa Franko
24 Hours Zagreb
Hiking the Plitvice Lakes
Dalmatian Coast Yachties
Yachties in Hvar